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Police Beat: Four from St. Paul busted for felony retail theft

ShopKo security called officers to the store for a group of possible shoplifters late Saturday afternoon, Jan. 7.

Two suspicious women were going around loading their shopping cart with clothing items.

In other part of the store, two suspicious men were doing the same with mostly electronic items.

Their actions were being observed on closed-circuit TV as police were called. Officers responded and parked their squads around the side of ShopKo, 1777 Paulson Road.

The women later paid for some toilet paper but allegedly walked out with their cart full of stolen merchandise.

The men allegedly followed, though they removed their goods from the cart and put them in a plastic tub, covering it with a lid. One the way out, one man allegedly also grabbed a $450 hoverboard.

Officers converged on them and their car, a 2009 Nissan Altima, in the parking lot. One of the woman allegedly said to the other, “I thought you paid for it.” Replied the other, “I didn't pay for that stuff yet.”

One of the men allegedly told police the four had come to ShopKo to steal “to put food on the table.”

The stolen merchandise totaled $1,247.

The four arrestees were said to be unemployed and from St. Paul. Three were in their 30s, while one of the women was 63. They are said to have criminal records.

They were taken to St. Croix County Jail. The case goes to the district attorney.

River Falls police also:

--Arrested a 20-year-old Inver Grove Heights, Minn., man for underage drinking and an ID card violation at Shooter's Pub, 107 E. Elm St., after 12:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 6.

The suspect was being held by the pub's manager as police arrived. He was allegedly in possession of three driver's licenses – from Minnesota, Wisconsin and Maryland.

The one from Minnesota was his and showed his real age; the one from Wisconsin was someone else's who was 22; and the one from Maryland was a fake, showing he was older, and was obtained for $50 on a website that sells and produces fake IDs.

The man allegedly admitted he was drunk and also drinking earlier at Broz Sports Bar downtown.

He was given citations totaling $374 with a Feb. 8 Municipal Court date.